It’s that time of year again! Cool day time temperatures, changing leaf color, and bluebird days all give way to great fishing conditions! We have experienced heavy rainfall the past couple of weeks and it has given us perfect water levels and even better water temperatures for fishing in the fall!
Look for smaller caddis flies in tan and dun colors. Dun variant mayflies in sizes 12 have been very abundant. Also, there are sporadic blue winged olives hatching in sizes 18 to 20. They tend to have more of a gray color this time of year.
Streamer patterns have also been working well during high water and in deeper pools. Smallmouth action has also increased dramatically and the topwater bite has offered some really nice fishing along the north and south fork of the New River. Also look for good fishing on the delayed harvest trout waters of the Watauga River! Here, look for similar hatches. Streamer patterns that create movement will also produce the best fishing!
South Holston and Watauga Tailwaters Fishing Report
On the Holston, Blue Winged Olives are coming off in size 18 – 22 during high and low water. As usual the tiny flies are present – black flies and midges – as well as scuds. On the Watauga, craneflys are very abundant in size 18 – 20 in a cream and sulphur yellow color.
There has also been increased activity with Blue Winged Olives. They have more of a grey color rather than the olive green. The Watauga also offers sporadic caddis activity along with the occasional big sulphur (size 14). Midges and small nymph rigs will always bring some fish to hand.
Blue Ridge Parkway and Boone Area Fishing Report
Fall has finally arrived in the High Country, bringing with it cooler weather and fish. Delayed harvest has now begun and fishing is great! There have been quite a few larger mayflies classified as Dun Variants.
They are dun colored and are close to a size 12. There will always be smaller dun and dark brown caddis flies in size 16-18. Also, start looking for blue wing olives and craneflys on the surface this time of year.
Nymphs such as pheasant tails, princes, hares ears, and stonefly patterns in size 12 – 18 will produce fish. Two fly rigs can increase your chances. Lead with a larger pattern (12 or 14 prince) and drop a smaller (16 or 18 midge, micro mayfly) behind it. Also, streamer patterns that create movement will produce.